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December 06 2008

More Than Just Duplicitous and Evil. Or: "Joss Whedon on Crafts and Craftiness". Remember that forthcoming "crafty" interview with Joss? Here it is. Show notes here, and transcript here.

As she herself apologizes, this was her "first experience recording a phone call, and the sound quality leaves much to be desired". Post edited to include her transcript link if you'd rather just read the interview.

I'm only halfway through the interview but I have to enthuse: These questions are awesome--some are quite insightful, others hilarious.
I think Underworld was actually originally about crocheters and knitters but they thought it would be too controversial so they changed it to vampires and werewolves.

I'd buy Underworld: Crocheters And Knitters for a dollar. It'd probably be better than, like, Underworld.
That was bizarre and awesome.
I just finished reading it - it's my second favourite Joss interview. And believe me, I've read an embarrassing amount of Joss interviews.
It is a fine, handcrafted interview.
She sent it to me as a present of good will because I work at Fox—I mean, in Hollywood.

Fantastic interview. New topics--and so funny!
This is an excellent interview. Even just partway in I was struggling to find words to comment on how this flows wonderfully and lets Joss be silly, while the interviewer goes with the flow but also guides things, but this explains it:

KW: So, crafty people often feel like they have to let their materials behave and become what they want to be, even if it's not what we had in mind to begin with. Do you feel that's somewhat similar sometimes in how you write characters and plot lines?

JW: You're going to need to meet the materials halfway. Yes, you definitely want every skein of yarn to do exactly what you have in mind, but they never will. And that's part of what makes it beautiful. That's part of what makes it not working in a factory. And every actor is going to bring something to the party, and I'm going to embrace what they're bringing as fucking hard as I can as long as it doesn't hurt the narrative, so that it becomes something more than just an idea I had that somebody acted out. You have to remember that if the thing isn't slightly out of control, it ain't art. Or [muffled] craft.

That's a really great interview.
So was Kate Beckinsale a knitter or a crocheter? 'Cos that costume didn't exactly look either....
A painter apparently, if you go by her costume.

Heh, that interview went all over the place in absolutely the best possible way, nice bit of work (I think the one with/by Bendis and the Onion AV Club ones are probably my favourites but that's just off the top of my head).

C'mon though crocheters vs knitters ? It's no contest surely, knitters just have greater range. Though maybe if the crocheters got in close, took away that long needle advantage. Hmm, may bear more consideration ...

[ edited by Saje on 2008-12-06 19:22 ]
Oh I have sadly knitted some things my own self! In fact my Jayne hat was sadly knitted by me....
That's an incredible interview. And if anyone is looking for a follow up in a similar sort of vein, I would suggest this.
I read a quote recently, in an article about the resurging DIY movement, that we're "crafting to claim identity, to save the world from soulless junk." Do you see any parallels in people's approach to internet-based video productions versus the big-media productions for television and movies and how people are really taking those media into their own hands right now?

That was the question I posted on her blog!!! Such an awesome way to start the day. :-)
Wow...I am the least crafty person I've ever met, and I know nothing about knitting or crocheting, (and I've never heard of decoupage) but that was one of the more insightful interviews I've read. I think Joss should stop doing straight forward interviews, as the crafty tangent seemed to get to the heart of matters much better than someone trying to go straight for the issues.
Joss's thoughts are a like a ball of yarn that a kitten has unraveled and knocked about the room.
This is one of the best Joss-interviews ever - building, as good craft-artists do, from a wisp of a thread - working tightly from a pattern, and yet loosely, as it occurs - until they have the beautiful finished work. Both Joss & Kim should be happy about this piece, which is light and airy, and yet tightly-knit and warming. It's a great metaphor for life - craft vs. art - with both approaches meaningful, but different from each another.

I love how this moves gracefully from the whimsey to the substance. It was like an S. J. Perelman parody married a Dick Cavett or David Frost interview and they had a macramé-encased baby.

The great quotes are almost too many to choose from - I can't do it, although those pulled in comments above are some of my favorites.

I'm a crafter myself - more the sewing-quilting-drawing, graphics & herbal products kindof gal rather than a yarny-gal, since yarn frightens me. I'm off to a craft sale now - really. (But I'm with Saje on the best other interviews, just adding the Write Environment one to the list.)
I still want to know who Josh intends to cast as Wonder Woman, though.
It was certainly nice to see that his stated early thoughts about the interview -- "These people will finally ask me something different." -- turned out to be true.
There's his ill-fated attempt to crotchet the whole crew messenger bags for Christmas one year. Total failure, he doesn't like to bring it up, apparently.
This is one of the funniest, warmest interviews I've read in a long time. Maybe I'll post more later. (Await with baited breath, all ye faithful!)
This interview is a dream come true for me. I have no words for the flood of emotions it produces. It's two rock stars I love talking to one another, about a thing I love and about stuff I believe in.

For the record, the plural of ethos is ethoi. I had to google it. Shameful. I am a bad Classicist.

Thank you thank you thank you Joss for doing this interview. It means a thing.
What an awesome interview! I think I need to go decoupage something.
Gosh darn it, I love Joss' yarns. I'm loving this thread. Had me in stitches. A very tight knit interview. Joss was very crafty. Hooked me in from the very beginning. Needle-less to say, I want more. Ok, I'll stop now, but only for a little while.

[ edited by RollingInKittens on 2008-12-07 00:49 ]

[ edited by RollingInKittens on 2008-12-14 12:19 ]
Forget Jayne hats, what do Joss hats look like?
The same but ginger.
...and they kill about one out of every ten people that buy them.

Not right away, of course - just after you've grown to love them.
Heh ;). Now I have this image of a malevolent knitted hat just sitting on your head, biding its time, sizing up who you love the most before leaping off and killing them (presumably with some kind of allergic reaction). There's a horror movie in there, surely ?
Killer Knitted Hats From Outer Space. 2.
"They're back. And this time, it's perl-sonal".
"Killer Knitted Hats From Outer Space. 2."

Or... "Serenknitty?"

[ edited by RollingInKittens on 2008-12-07 01:22 ]
Ahhhh. The things I've crocheted never come out the way the picture looks. I guess that makes me an artist. *warm fuzzies* :)
Nice nice interview. I think that all of Joss' interviews should be from people in various artistic media. But then we should have known how good this would be - Joss can spin quite a yarn.
This was a great interview - good questions and equally good answers, the latter being expected, of course!

I knit, crochet, hook rugs, and various other crafty things and enjoy them all, so if there were a war between knitters and crocheters, I'd have to go to war with myself!

It sounds as if Kai is even more multi-talented than I realised.;)
To echo all the comments above: this was a great interview.

I now return you all to your regular pun-ing :)
She sent it to me as a present of good will because I work at Fox—I mean, in Hollywood.

This was the funniest thing I have heard in ages!
Forget Jayne hats, what do Joss hats look like?

Like this:

But that's not nearly handmade enough to be satisfying, so I may have to design something. (It would be a propos that my first hat design would be named after Joss. Suggestions, anyone?)

[ edited by Kiba on 2008-12-07 07:11 ]
Thinking back to Mutant Enemy Day, a Joss hat looks remarkably like a Boston Red Sox baseball cap.
Great questions! Yep- one of the best Joss interviews.
So could there actually be peace? Has anybody ever tried to crochet and knit something together or at the same time?

Hmmm, decoupage. I remember seeing that in the movie Fried Green Tomatoes. Nominated for 2 Oscars. It was a Universal Pictures production.
Anonymous1, there are lots of items that unite knit and crochet. Crochet is especially good for lace, so often crafters will knit an item and then crochet trim for it.

But theirs is a forbidden love.

[ edited by Kiba on 2008-12-07 09:00 ]
Well, for all the Whedoncrafters out there (and I know there are a LOT, judging by the membership numbers on the respective Ravelry groups), if you HAVE designed something Whedonverse-inspired, let me know... I'm currently curating an entire collection of patterns to be published alongside my infamous and still-not-done Joss sweater) as a kick in the pants to myself and as a benefit for Equality Now.

Kim is a dear friend of mine and I could not POSSIBLY be prouder of her for this interview. So brilliant!
Or... "Serenknitty?"

Hah, nice one RollingInKittens ;).
I'm afraid someone else has been Sereknitty for a long time (if you scroll down you'll see lots of Jayne hats)
ETR - dupe post. I blame the iPhone. Don't hurt me.

[ edited by napua on 2008-12-07 18:40 ]
That "some guy" with the best of/ worst of times quote also featured knitters prominently as a storytelling device. (they encoded secret messages in sequences of knots.)
Thanks Saje!

"They're back. And this time it's perl-sonal.", is a classic! Hi-larious! :))

(loved your "Serotonin-y" in a thread way back also, BTWs!)
No weapons, no friends, no hope. Take all that away, and what's left?

But I haven't picked up any needles in a long while except to stab people. My wife does.

Mis-read those sentences, initially.
(Must have been because I watched the Robot Chicken scene just before this interview.)
The woman that conducted the interview is curious what everyone thought of it. Link to her blog.
That was. Awesome. :-)

And, RollinginKittens, you made my day:

Gosh darn it, I love Joss' yarns. I'm loving this thread. Had me stitches. A very tight knit interview. Joss was very crafty. Hooked me in from the very beginning. Needle-less to say, I want more. Ok, I'll stop now, but only for a little while.

It really was one of the best interviews I've ever read/heard/anything with Joss Whedon.

And I know that no one is probably still following that, but I felt the need to post my bravos on this interview.

Also, gotta love the message he's conveyed in his recent interviews (the other one being the Write Environment). If you're a crafter, craft. A writer, write. But do it now, and do it for yourself. That's what matters. But if you wait for money/fame/peer pressure, it might never happen. If it makes you happy, do it.


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